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1952 to 1975 - Outside World

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Tipping Appeal

The story of 6-year-old Michael who was tied to a stake

You see, Michael - that of course is not his real name - is mentally retarded, but he's as active as any normal child. He can get into all the dangers that a normal child can get into, but he hasn't the intelligence to realise the dangers.

That's why his parents had to tie him up, and that's how The Herald found him - in a leather harness, tethered to a 6 ft. length of water-pipe, playing in the dirt.

E.W. Tipping, The Story of 6-year-old Michael who was tied to a stake, The Herald, 6 April 1953, page 4.
Courtesy of The Herald & Weekly Times Ltd and Dr Marjorie Tipping MBE, Tipping Papers, private collection.

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Voluntary Organisations


During 1956, we valued the services, under the leadership of Mrs. Irving, of a group of ladies who came weekly and undertook mending for all wards at the Cottages.

The regular voluntary workers' groups have continued their active interest in the Cottages. Gifts, recreational outings, &c., have been provided by the various branches of the Mental Hospital Auxiliaries. The Kew Mental Hospital Welfare Group, branches of the Country Women's Association, and various Mothers Clubs have shown continued keen interest in the children.

We are greatly indebted to the Anonymous Hostesses who held a Shepherds' Market Fair in December in Toorak-Road. The proceeds of this Fair were used to purchase a Volkswagen bus which is making a tremendous contribution to the happiness and Welfare of the patients and will also be responsible for an enormous saving in transport costs.

We are indebted to the State Savings Bank Officers' Association for their extremely generous gifts of a Television set plus £100's worth of wheel toys.

We are grateful to Mr. Trask and his band of Seventh Day Adventist helpers for their gifts, entertainments and transport for various outings for the children.

During the year a tremendous number of donations were received from private individuals, State and private schools, and social clubs from various offices and factories, &c. A large number of these donations were in the form of cheques. These cheques are banked in a special fund which is drawn upon from time to time when some amenity is required, for example, recently a large paddling pool was purchased for the girls in Ward 26, and five girls attended a gymnastic session of the Olympic Games, tickets being paid for from this fund. Councillor Donald Chipp very kindly arranged these tickets for the girls at greatly reduced rates.

We are also greatly indebted to the Anonymous Hostesses who were largely responsible for the purchase of several hundreds of pounds' worth of rubber mattresses through the Mental Hospitals Donations Trust Fund.

During the year a group of senior boys from Wesley College came every second Tuesday afternoon and did much valuable work in the way of cleaning up the grounds, removing boulders, and grading and levelling. During the August vacation these boys gave us a full week of their time and almost completed the making of a car park on the north side of Ward 26.

Several senior boys from Xavier College came regularly and took a batch of the school boys for spiritual guidance.

We are greatly indebted to Mr. Romcke for his continued keen interest in the Cottages and for his generous donations of sets of kindergarten tables and chairs which are used in the O.T. centre and wards accommodating smaller girls.


Deputy Psychiatrist-Superintendent, Dr W.A. Brady, Kew Children's Cottages, Report of the Mental Hygiene Authority for the Year ended 31st December, 1956.

Victoria Papers Presented to Parliament, 1956-58, Vol. II, page 61.



The Visiting Service of Auxiliaries, as in previous years, provided sterling service. A large number of these people worked in wards, supplementing and complementing the work of the nursing staff. In addition to the work carried out within the Cottages a large number worked in the community, assisting the parents of retarded children, baby sitting while mothers went shopping, providing transport to day centres and clinics, and numerous other tasks. Training and orientation courses were held at the Cottages and at Essendon and the response was most gratifying.


Psychiatrist Superintendent, Dr. J.L. Evans and Secretary, Mr D. Nugent, Kew Children's Cottages, Training Centre, Report of the Mental Health Authority for the year ended 31st December 1968.

Victoria Papers Presented to Parliament, 1969-70, Vol. III, page 93.

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